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University of Health Science, ICRC Ink Agreement

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LAHORE– The University of Health Sciences (UHS) and the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) have entered into an agreement to facilitate the improved means and methods of human identification following disasters and emergencies.

The memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed on Wednesday by UHS VC Prof Javed Akram and ICRC forensic Coordinator in Pakistan, Laurel Clegg.

The basic objective of MoU is to improve access to training in humanitarian forensic identification through module development, conferences, roundtables and other fora.

Addressing on the occasion, UHS VC Prof Javed Akram said that with the rising incidents of terrorism and violent crimes the need for qualified forensic dental experts was also becoming increasingly critical in the country.

The newly emerging science of forensic odontology could help in identifying the charred dead-bodies or beheaded human skulls found on the site of a bomb-blast or any other industrial accident or homicide, he added. 

Prof Javed further said that under the agreement UHS would establish Pakistan’s first Disaster Victim Identification Unit at new campus besides setting up a dental data registry.

He announced that fifty per cent seats in academic programmes launched under this agreement would be reserved for students from disaster affected countries including Syria, Palestine and Afghanistan.

ICRC representative Laurel Clegg said that her organization world provide all out support to the university with regards to disaster management.

UHS focal person for the agreement, Dr Humayoun Temoor said that the unique nature of the dental anatomy and the custom restorations ensured accuracy when the techniques were appropriately employed. “A consistent effort has to be made to computerize all the data available to facilitate comparison.

Efforts have to be made to maintain the dental records which will serve as ante mortem data”, he added.

He further said that the practicing dentists and the dental students should be made aware of the available technologies and its use in forensic dentistry.

New researches had to be encouraged in the field of forensic dentistry which would pave way for incorporating newer technologies in establishing the human identity, he concluded.— PRESS RELEASE